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Ercole sfida Sansone

Hercules, Samson and Ulysses

Italy 1963
produced by
I.C.D
directed by Pietro Francisci
starring Kirk Morris, Richard Lloyd (= Iloosh Khoshabe), Liana Orfei, Diletta D'Andrea, Enzo Cerusico, Fulvia Franco, Aldo Giuffrè, Andrea Fantasia, Nando Angelini, Marco Mariani, Jole Mauro, Pietro Tordi, Mario De Simone, Aldo Pini, Ettore Zamperini, Ugo Sasso, Mario Wassilli, Fortunato Arena, Giovanni Di Benedetto, Willi Colombini, Cinzia Bruno, Fulvio Carrara, Loris Loddi, Stefania Sabatini, Walter Grant, Rina Mascetti, Antonio Corevi, Halina Zalewska, Wladimiro Tuicovich, Cyrus Elias, Franco Fantasia
written by Pietro Francisci, music by Angelo Francesco Lavagnino

Hercules, Samson, Ulysses, Hercules (Kirk Morris), Hercules in Italy, Hercules in the 1950's/60's

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Hercules (Kirk Morris) and his men - a certain youngster called Ulysses (Enzo Cerusico) among them - are sent out by Laertes (Andrea Fantasia), King of Ithaca to kill a sea serpent ... but somehow, they're ship-wrecked and end up in Judaea, where Hercules is seen killing a lion bare-handedly, and thus thought to be Samson (Richard Lloyd), the only man in Judaea known for being capable of such a deed. Thing is, Samson is regarded as a rebel by Seren (Aldo Giuffrè), King of the Philistines, and now he has Hercules and his friends arrested, mistaking him for that other lionkiller. He doesn't believe Hercules either when he insists being Greek, but his wife Delilah (Lina Orfei) seems to be more sound in mind and persuades Seren to let Hercules go but hold his friends hostage to force him to bring Seren the real Samson. On the way to capture Samson, Delilah of course tries to seduce Hercules, but to no avail. Hercules ultimately battle it out, but half way through the fight, they come to the conclusion that they actually have much more in common than they thought and above all a common enemy. So the two force Delilah (who eventually also tries her charms on Samson, with equally little success) to bring them to Seren, but are still lured into a trap ... but since the both of them are known to throw rocks around, take on entire armies single-handedly, and have a huge fanbase in the populace, they ultimately overcome Seren, and when King Laertes rescue ship arrives for the finale as well, everything turns out a-ok.

 

This film pays no heed to something even remotely resembling historical accuracy but instead carelessly throws together mythologies that have nothing whatsoever to do with one another - and still, the film is one of the more enjoyable peplums from the latter days of the genre, as it moves along at a steady pace, features some cool sets and action setpieces, plays up Liana Orfei's sex appeal by presenting her as the resident vamp, and it's rather beautifully filmed, too. That said, no genre classic whatsoever, but definitely one of the better peplums of its vintage ...

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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